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PETALL - Pan-European Task Activities for Language Learning

Despite the strong emphasis that the Common European Framework (CEFR) places on task-based language teaching (TBLT), this approach still constitutes a major challenge for a significant number of FL teachers, not so much because they are not familiar with the concept itself or the communicative benefits that can be derived from it, but because of the requirements and practical conditions to be met, especially at the levels of operationalization, implementation and evaluation. In general, teachers agree that tasks, being in principle learner-centred and involving problem-solving procedures or the development of products, not only help learners meet practical challenges, but also facilitate interaction and make learners responsible for the outcomes of the communication process. Unsurprisingly, the national curricula of many countries are clear about the importance of adopting a task-based approach in foreign language learning. The reality of the classroom, however, does not always satisfy that desideratum. The consortium members of the present proposal, committed as they are to investing in the further development of teacher education in technology-mediated TBLT, propose to build on the outcomes of Comenius projects in which some of them participated in the past (the ETALAGE and the ECNTLT), to extend previously acquired knowledge to other partners and to construct a transnational strategy for ICT-based task design management, which entails the setting up of regional networks seeking to promote the languages of the partners involved in the project. With the present proposal, the consortium members intend to address the development of some of the key competences defined in the 2010 joint progress report of the Council and the Commission on the implementation of the ‘Education and Training 2010 work programme’, namely communication in foreign languages; digital competence; social and civic competences; cultural awareness and expression. The partners also aim to promote plurilingualism, linguistic diversity and mutual understanding, all of which are at the core of the Council of Europe language education policies.


António Lopes    
School of Education and Communication
University of the Algarve

António Lopes, PhD in English Culture, MA in English Literature and BA in Modern Languages and Literatures (English and German), is Senior Lecturer (Professor-Adjunto) in English Studies with the Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures at the School of Education and Communication, University of Algarve, where he teaches English language, literature and culture, literary analysis and supervises ELT postgraduate projects. He was the director of studies of postgraduate programmes in ELT and translation. He is a researcher at the Centre for English, Translation and Anglo-Portuguese Studies (FCHS/UNL and FLUP), working with the following research groups: Anglo-Portuguese Studies; TEALS: Teacher Education and Applied Language Studies; British Culture and History. He has also participated in several European-funded projects, namely the ECNTLT (European Curricula in New Technologies and Language Teaching) and the ETALAGE (European Task-based Activies for Language Learning: a Good Practice Exchange). He is currently the EUROCALL representative in Portugal.


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